Tag Archives: teaching

Thunderstorm Dancing live performance

Late last year I was excited to get a message from Colleen who teaches at Currimundi Special School in Queensland asking for permission to use projected images from Thunderstorm Dancing at an end of year concert.

Paul Coppens, founder of the Melbourne Philharmonic Orchestra, composed a piece of music to accompany the children’s performance, and provided a full orchestral backing track. The result was spectacular.

I wasn’t able to go up to see the performance, but I have seen a video on Paul’s website. You can see it here. (You’ll find the ’Thunderstorm Dancing‘ link at the bottom right of the screen.) It is only six minutes long and a delight. Thank you so much, Paul.

When I saw the book I was immediately inspired not only by the words but especially the pictures. These were my inspiration and the writing from then on was easy. So thank you very much. These school children are also an inspiration so combining all these elements, and seeing their reaction was my gratification. (Paul Coppens)

It makes me so happy to see the book used in this way. It is ideally suited to the classroom. The end of the performance is a stroke of genius by the teachers. Bravo!

Cicada images from ‘Searching For Cicadas’

Free to download

Feel free to download these cicada drawings and use them in your home or classroom. You might like to make a bushland collage and paste cicadas onto your trees or have them flying through the air. Some need colouring, and some simply need to be printed, cut out and pasted down.

I have posted pdfs and jpeg versions of the same three pages. Use whichever format is easiest for you to download and print.

These nymph images appear in colour on various pages within the book. The eyes were modified to make the pupils less clear as I realised that nymphs that are about to shed their carapaces (or exoskeletons), are peering through a mottled pair of ‘spectacles’. When they shed their shells and emerge as fully fledged cicadas, their eyes are shiny and bright with clear pupils.
These are the drawings that became final images on one spread within the book.
These colour sketches were used to design the cover of the book and replaced with finished drawings.

To buy the book, go here, or support your local bookshop.

Department of Education and Training early learning wall friezes

To prove I’m still here, I’m popping up some single illustrations done for the Department of Education and Training this year. The brief read thus:

The purpose of the four wall friezes is to encourage families to engage in learning activities with their child everyday. On each frieze there will be eight panels – a cover and a panel for each day of the week, with a different illustration of a family member(s) and a child/children engaged in a learning activity related to the theme. For example:

    • Music: dancing/singing, etc.
    • Science: cooking/exploring nature, etc.
    • Maths/numeracy: counting/measuring/block building/puzzles, etc.
    • Imaginative play: dress ups/cubby houses/pretend play/creative play spaces, etc.

The DET are happy for me to post fragments of the artwork I did for them, and you will hopefully come across the full design somewhere; perhaps in your local library.

Not surprisingly there was a dog or a chicken in each illustration… Oh actually, I couldn’t find a hygienic way to get a dog or a chicken onto the kitchen bench for the Maths illustration. Rats.

(…There were no rats in the kitchen either.)

kids play music JudyWatsonArt

A fragment: Music

Tommy from Thunderstorm Dancing enjoyed a new incarnation here. So did some of the other characters.

little spaniel from Imaginative play JudyWatsonArt

A (small) fragment: Imaginative play.

There’s that spaniel again. She keeps popping up.

my boys do cooking Maths JudyWatsonArt

A fragment: maths

My 12 year old got morphed into a 15 year old for this illustration. That was fun. I morphed him back again later. I’m not ready for a 15 year old.

Geeky little girl enjoys science with chicken friend

A fragment: science

Geeky girl gardener enjoys some science play. I like a geeky girl and I like her taste in chickens.